Dozens in Lancaster rally in support of Redskins name

Group says school board acted without community support

LANCASTER, N.Y. (WIVB)- More than a month after a vote to get rid of a controversial mascot name, many Lancaster parents and students are still protesting.

“It’s something I believe in. It’s something I want to do and want my kids to grow up having,” said Lancaster student Carl Wampler.

Saturday, he joined dozens of other protesters in the “Once a Redskin March” from the Lancaster town hall to the district office. The group carried signs and sported t-shirts with the Redskins name and logo. RedskinsRally3

They chanted “let’s go Redskins!” in unison on their way to the district office.

Protesters told News 4 for the march was a symbol the Redskins mascot will never leave Lancaster.

Wampler told News 4 being a Redskin is an important legacy, regardless of who finds it offensive.

“You can say it’s offensive to use the N word for example and everybody uses it. We use Redskins and it’s racist supposedly,” he said.

The name change was prompted by Native American community members who said they found the title to be disrespectful.

The school board was unanimous when they voted to retire it.

Following the decision, students at Lancaster High School rallied both in support and against the change.

After the name was tossed out, Native Americans in Lancaster told News 4 they felt as if the students were being torn apart because of the issue.

One of Saturday’s event organizers, Brenda Christopher, who is also running for a seat on the school board, said regardless of what the new mascot is, it’s just important the students decide, not the school board.

“We are no longer concerned about it staying. We realize that the students are now in the process of changing it. They’re deciding a new name right now, and we’re okay with that because it’s student driven,” she told News 4.

Students are expected to vote sometime in June.

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